NEDERLAND — We’ve danced around it all season. They’ve been written about, praised by coaches, fans, players and writers. They’ve wowed, they’ve choke-slammed and they’ve racked up a ton of tackles, sacks and assorted other stats.
Why hasn’t the Nederland defensive line gotten featured yet? Well,it’s because I couldn’t think up a good enough nickname.
See, a group this impressive needs a catchy moniker, something that will inspire fear and dread, like the Steel Curtain or the Purple People Eaters. In search of answers, I looked up dominant on Dictionary.com and this is all I found:
Dominant: [dom-uh-nuh nt]; adjective 1. The Nederland defensive line.
That was weird, but no help there. So, what makes up a good nickname? The Houston Texans got a snappy one under Southeast Texas favorite son Wade Phillips in the Bulls On Parade. It’s a song, and it describes their defensive philosophy. Sort of.
Could anything like that work for the foursome of senior defensive end Koby Couron (6-3, 230), junior defensive end De Shawn Washington (6-3, 275), senior defensive tackle Brock Pryor (6-2, 275) and junior defensive tackle Caleb Malveaux (5-10, 300)?
To figure out what makes them tick as a group, we went straight to Nederland head coach Larry Neumann.
“I think they like each other a lot,” Neumann said. “This whole team enjoys each other ‘s company. Those four guys are brothers. They’re talking in between plays. Sometimes, when you’re trying to coach them, it almost makes you angry, because they’re visiting with one another.
“But, what they’re visiting about isn’t off-topic, it’s about football.Most of the time, it’s on track and if it’s not, they get refocused quickly. They’re serious and they’re serious about all four of them playing together as well as they do.”